Friday, April 10, 2009

Life's a long song

I was looking through some old pictures last night and feeling a little bit melancholy. It's really quite rare for me to feel that way, but it was a full moon, and I tend to get a little looney when the moon is full. I know it's weird, but it's true. I don't start ripping my clothes off and baying at the moon, but I do get irritable and short-tempered, and yes, a trifle weepy. It's like lunar PMS or something. Or actual PMS, but whatever.

Time is moving too quickly. My children are growing so fast that I don't feel like I am savoring it enough; I find myself wishing for bedtime when I should really be just enjoying spending time with these little guys whom I love so completely. I keep having moments when I imagine what it will be like when they're grown, or at least off at college, and I have all this free time to sit and drink wine and read my books and watch something other than SpongeBob and.... and GOD. It sounds fucking terrible! It sounds lonely! I'm having pre-emptive empty nest syndrome.

How to slow down time? How to enjoy every moment? How to be grateful enough?

I've never been one of those people for whom life is a given. I have always, even as a child, harbored a rather morbid part in my mind that goes to dark places pretty easily. If my mom was late from work, I'd sit in the window and cry, imagining her in a firey car accident. Nice, huh? My parents like to say I'm just the biggest worrier they've ever known, and that's partially true, but I think it's more like I just have no problem imagining the worst case scenerio for any given situation.

And here's where you're all gonna place me solidly into the "hippy-dippy metaphysical hoo-hah" category, but frankly I feel like I've been here before, and I think I've seen some crazy ass shit, and I think it makes it all the more easy to know that bad stuff happens to good people all the goddamn time. There is nothing in life that is a given, no guarantees. None. Everything wonderful can be wiped out in a heartbeat. Everything that irks you today, you will miss when it is gone.

I am so grateful for my life, which has felt charmed despite its hardships. I still have so much to learn, but feel like there's joy in that work. I just want to do right by everyone, including myself. When I am an old woman sitting alone in a quiet, empty house, I just want to feel like I've accomplished something worthwhile. I want to feel like I experienced life with all of its ugliness and beauty, and came out better for it in the end.


Samsmama said...

Yes, bad stuff happens to good people all the fucking time! It makes you realize how short life is. My biggest fear is outliving my child.

Having been mushy for a moment, I'll have you know that yesterday I said, out loud, HOW MANY HOURS UNTIL BEDTIME?

jessica o said...

I carry the same thoughts with me. You are not alone. I have imagined/ fantasized about the tragic deaths of all my family members and tried to predict how I would continue without them. Morbid curiosity.

I don't think I would be able to completely immerse myself in my kids' lives if I didn't also have the desire to enjoy life beyond their childhood.

Don't dwell.

Harmony said...

First LMAO @ "Lunar PMS" That shit is the worst!

For whatever reason my parents would leave and always tell us that they "would be back in a half hour" ALWAYS. Regardless of where they were going, and what they needed to do. After hours of them being gone I would break down and convince my sisters that they had obviously died, and we were all screwed.

Morbid curiosity is right Jessica O, and I do the same damn thing.

The want to live all the experiences and cherish all the moments is great, but sometimes life just gets in the way. But on those days when it is possible, it's fantastic...right?

Bev said...

Samsmama - That's it! That's totally the fear right there. Freaking morbid brain of mine... need more wine! I'm glad I'm not the only one watching the clock, waiting for those few precious hours of "adult" time. Those hours are even shorter in my house because my husband can't stay awake past 8 PM. Geek.

JessO - Thank you. I definitely DO have a desire to do other things, and there are so many things I plan to do when the kids are older. It's like this future-perfect tense where I'm always saying, "I'll do that when the kids are older." but then I wonder, will I? You're right, best not to dwell.
Need more wine!

Harmony - I totally have Lunar PMS! You, too? It's weird! My friend Mala also thinks that I attract weirdos around full moons, and I think she's right!

Your story is so funny! I was totally that kid, too! And you're right, on those days, it is fantastic. I need to focus on those more, clearly. AAAAAND,

Harmony said...

Yeah, it's like waiting for the Chorus portion of the song, you know? The part that everyone knows the words to and belts out. It feels like that.

Matter Of Fact Mommy said...

oh my dear Bev, i totally understand exactly what you're saying! in fact, i even got a tear. perhaps it that time of the month or something. ahem.

anyhoo, the piece of this post which i identify with most is, "I've never been one of those people for whom life is a given. I have always, even as a child, harbored a rather morbid part in my mind that goes to dark places pretty easily."

this does not make us "worriers", it simply means that we actually DO understand how beautiful life in its current state. seriously! and the fact that you know this about yourself is awesome.

and you're SO TOTALLY NOT hippy-dippy-metaphysical hoo-hah!

word verf = brorrew. "can i brorrew your pen?" sorry, i'm reaching.

Jill said...

Bev - you're awesome - each little unique facet helps make you the amazing individual you are - and I love that you put it out there for the rest of us to identify with!

Everyone else - same to you - I'm feeling all mushy too and love the way I am able to relate to people I haven't met by finding out that some of the things I keep hidden in my daily life aren't as uncommon and crazy as they feel internally (or, if they are, at least I'm not alone).

I think everyone has the morbid imaginations at times... I realized I missed a nickname on the "Al" post - Suzie Fucking Sunshine... SFS for short... I'm actually called Suzie too by several people - I'm an annyoningly "look on the bright side of things" type of person and I also imagine all the worst case scenarios and fantasize about how they'd play out. And then I feel guilty. I'm big on the guilt.

I feel like I'm rambling so I'll go.

Bev said...

Harmony - that's so poetic! And totally right on.

MOFM - we're on the same cycle, like college roommies. ;) Thank you for your kind words of kinship, and for the giggle over the word verif. :D You always bring the funny, even when you're saying something serious. I freaking LOVE that.

SFS - Thank you for getting it! As you know, I'm an optimist too; but I definitely have those dark thoughts way too often. It helps to know that other otherwise-optimists have them, too.

Cary said...

Well, they do call it "being on your moon" when Aunt Flo comes to town, right? There must be some connection.

I like this post, even though you are feeling melancholy. I have the same fear of realizing too late that life has passed me by, especially when I think of my child and how quickly she is growing up. I'm always reminded of "Our Town," when Emily, as a ghost, asks, "Does anyone appreciate life when they live it?" (paraphrased) and the Stage Manager replies, "No, except maybe poets and saints."

I guess having the feeling is a good reminder to savor those moments, although it's hard to do when the child is wearing you out and yes, you just want them to go to bed so you can relax.

Bev said...

Cary - Yes, women are ruled by the tides, I s'pose. Thanks for not being freaked out by my squishy side. ;)

Love that you referenced Our Town - that is so perfect. I remember that line from when we did the play in college, but it means so much more now. Thanks for the reminder.

Cary said...

Nope, don't mind the squishy side. I have one too, I just keep it locked away.